Greg Wolas served as
990’s all night host from 1973 to 1979. Greg’s interest in radio was ignited when he was interviewed on the “Knot Hole Club” with other youngsters who gave their opinions about the Cleveland Indians and the then, upcoming 1956 season. During his senior year in high school, Greg obtained his Third Class Commercial Radiotelephone license and landed a job working the board, logging transmitter readings, and announcing time, temps, and weather at WZAK-FM.
He entered Cleveland State University where he majored in speech with an emphasis on radio and television broadcasting. Greg also took some business courses "just in case." During his years at CSU, he worked for the campus radio station and became the chief announcer for the Radio and Television Guild, a campus organization that produced educational shows for commercial radio. He also filled in on weekends at WDOK-AM and WCLV-FM.
After college, Greg worked in production at WVIZ-TV (PBS). “I didn’t stay with WVIZ more than several months because
ETV, as it was called then, didn’t pay all too well, but the experience was tremendous because I got a chance to do so many different things,” Greg told us.
Toward the end of 1969, Greg took a position with 20th-Century Fox Film Distribution. “It wasn’t broadcasting, but it was promotions and a chance to learn something about the film distribution business,” Greg explained.
In 1973, Greg and his wife decided to move to Florida. Greg said, “My original intention was to open a theatre in Deltona, but Jerry Lewis Cinemas already held an option, and I knew enough not to butt heads with a national chain.” So, Greg put out the feelers and learned that a new TV station
WOFL (Ch. 35) was about to open in Orlando. Paul Williamson was the PD and offered him a position, but problems with tower construction were to delay the new station’s debut, and Greg needed a job.
Greg liked what he heard on WHOO-AM 990, then the number one country station in Central Florida. Clay Daniels called Greg to fill-in for
Gary Roberts for one evening. That turned out to be Greg’s audition, and one week later, Daniels offered him the midnight to 6:00 slot.
Greg “worked” the show with his vocal characterizations, and according to Greg, “some of the corniest groaners in history” that caught on with his audience, and the show held as number one night show during his tenure. Soon, his kiddie show parody “Uncle Buckeye’s Kiddie Korner,” that aired in the last five minutes of his show, became so popular that more people knew him as Uncle Buckeye rather than
Greg Wolas. “Sometimes on remotes, people would ask ‘which one are you?’ I would say
Greg Wolas, but when they gave me the blank stare, I said Uncle
Buckeye! The recognition was immediate.” The Orange County Sheriff’s Department honored the Kiddie Korner with its own
10 code that was used to ask, “What was the Uncle Buckeye joke for today?”
Even Greg will tell you that his popularity was overshadowed by his alter ego and arch foil on the Kiddie Korner - Froggy D. Alligator, the cigar smoking, tobacco chewing, whiskey swilling, womanizing, wise-cracking member of the “Liar’s Club” who always “one-upped” ‘ol Buckeye. Greg tells us that Froggy is alive and well doing stand-up at Betty Bimbo’s Lights-Out-Lounge.
And as for Greg today: He left broadcasting due to health problems, but through
lifestyle changes, dietary modifications, whiskey swilling, womanizing and cigar
smoking, Greg is alive and well among the ranks of the retired!
passed away suddenly in Deltona, Florida on Saturday June 13, 2009. Greg
battled many complications of rheumatoid arthritis.